The statue of Victor Hugo at Hauteville House in Guernsey

Victor Hugo's masterpiece Les Misérables was penned in Guernsey and is set to become a new television blockbuster

Wednesday 19 December

The BBC has announced that its six-part flagship version of Les Misérables will be transmitted from 30th December.

The cast bringing Victor Hugo's dramatic novel of struggle to life will be led by Dominic West as the convict Jean Valjean trying to escape his past, with David Oyelowo as the policeman Javert obsessed with bringing him to justice.

Lily Collins will play Fantine, the young orphaned single mother and her daughter Cosette will be played by Ellie Bamber with Olivia Colman starring as abusive Madame Thénardier and Erin Kellyman portraying Éponine.

The new adaptation takes its roots and inspiration directly from Hugo's novel written on the island of Guernsey during his fifteen-year exile there from France.

Banished to Guernsey in 1856 Hugo moved to beautiful Hauteville House perched high in the capital of St Peter Port from where he could gaze over to his beloved France on a clear day.

The island proved to be fruitful inspiration for Hugo with much of his most renowned work created in Guernsey during his years there. In addition to Les Misérables Hugo wrote Toilers of the Sea, The Man Who Laughs and The Legend of the Ages all whilst a Guernsey resident.

The eccentrically decorated Hauteville House, which is one of Guernsey's most popular tourist attractions, is widely regarded as a piece of work in itself and an expression of Hugo's creative genius packed with a profusion of second-hand furniture and bric-à-brac bought by Hugo during his time on the island.

However, with time, the weather, instability of certain objects and natural wear and tear of the materials and textiles have changed the house and its décor. The house has been closed throughout 2018 for extensive refurbishment work made possible by a three-million-euro patronage programme from The Pinault Collection.

The renovations will not only return Hugo's house to its former glory, but also modernise public facilities, improve accessibility and enhance the visitor experience The re-opening is scheduled for April..

The house is now managed by Paris Musées, which is also responsible for the conservation of Hugo's other iconic house on the Place des Vosges in Paris.


Date is finally et for the 2019 Silverstone Classic

The 2019 date for the annual Silverstone Classic is finally agreed

Thursday, 6 December

• Next summer’s Silverstone Classic confirmed for 26-28 July 

• Packed retro race programme features cream of international historic racing action

• Feast of off-track activities and entertainment for families of all ages   

• Super Early Bird tickets still available… but only until the end of this month 

Next summer’s Silverstone Classic is now confirmed for the weekend of 26-28 July. The date had already been announced but remained ‘provisional’ until Formula One’s governing body, the FIA, formally ratified its 2019 calendar at yesterday’s meeting of its World Motor Sport Council in St Petersburg.  

With the British Grand Prix at Silverstone now rubber stamped for Sunday 14 July, the Silverstone Classic can officially take its traditional place in the calendar a fortnight after Formula One headlines at the home of British motor racing. 

Coming at the start of the summer holidays, the hugely-popular three-day Classic is expecting another 100,000-plus crowd, plus a star-studded line-up of drivers. What’s more, though tickets have been on sale since October, festival-goers who were waiting for a verified date can still take advantage of the Super Early Bird offer available until the end of December. 

These Super Early Bird tickets offer significant savings of up to 22 per cent on standard tickets and adult admission currently starts at just £35 with the price of the three-day weekend ticket frozen at £99. Full details of all ticket prices – including Parc Fermé and Clubhouse hospitality packages, the RetroRun experience and camping – can be found on the website.